Discover the ultimate sportcation in Ruapehu 


Swap out screen time to serene in the green time and enjoy some active rejuvenation mountainside or riverside in Ruapehu’s refreshing, remarkable wonderland. Far from the crowds but as close to nature as you can get, Ruapehu is the perfect destination to experience the wellness boost you’ve been looking for with a few very good reasons why you need to book your next sportcation here. 



Home to two New Zealand Great Rides  

With nearly 500 km of cycle trails to explore, Ruapehu is the perfect base for pedal powered adventures. One of two NZ Great Rides in Ruapehu, the Timber Trail offers the complete packagea one-of-a-kind cycling getaway that all future sportcations will find hard to topthere’s absolutely nothing else like it in NZ. Renowned as NZ’s best twoday wilderness ride, the Timber Trail is rated grade 2/3, easy/intermediate and is 85 km long, averaging about 5-7 hours of riding each day that you can enjoy all year-round.  


Choose from some stunning accommodation options along the way – glamp at Camp Epic, stay at Blackfern Lodge or check-in at the Timber Trail Lodge, located halfway along the trail, 100% off the grid and sustainable by design, you can book in an all-inclusive 2-night package with meals, accommodation, shuttle, and luggage transfers included as well as add-on options for bike hire too.  


For those who prefer hiking to biking, the Timber Trail can also be walked and makes up part of the legendary Te Araroa Trail – walkers please just remember to give way to cyclists please. With limited mobile reception along the trail, it’s the best way to unplug and connect to the natural world around you.  


If you’re keen to explore other rides in Ruapehu, take your pick from a network of short to multi-day rides from the Mountains to Sea Ngā Ara Tūhono Cycle Trail that weave in and out of cosy alpine villages, mountain towns, and riverside settlements. With a community of avid riders, it’s easy to chat to locals keen to share their favourite trail. There’s also a number of passionate operators who offer bike hire, shuttle transfers and ready to ride packages with special offers and deals.  


Explore the walking capital of the North Island 

Home to two NZ Great Walks and two national parks side by side, Ruapehu is an absolute mecca for walking and hiking adventures. 

With Whanganui National Park to the west, the UNESCO Dual World Heritage Site of Tongariro National Park to the east, and the aptly named Adventure Highway SH 4 running through the middle, you’ll discover a glorious network of world-class tracks literally at your doorstep. You can wander straight from your accommodation to some of the most renowned hikes in New Zealand after breakfast, come back for a rest and carry on for a sunset stroll to top off the day. For those keen to make the most of their active holidays, you can opt for multi-day hikes like the Tongariro Northern Circuit or the Whanganui Journey a NZ Great Walk on water that will connect you to a life force beyond your imagination.   


Whether you’re based in Taumarunui, Raetihi, Ohakune or Owhango National Park Village or Whakapapa Village, there are hidden gems to uncover like the enchanting Taranaki Falls, ancient rapids in otherworldly volcanic landscapes, and stunning alpine lakes. 

Lord of the Rings fans will also discover the real Middle Earth in Ruapehu with several film locations featuring the striking, natural wonders of Tongariro National Park. 


Known as one of the best one-day hikes in the world, Ruapehu is also home to the infamous Tongariro Alpine Crossing. With a booking system now in place as well as a range of local operators offering guided tours, you can take on this remarkable journey year-round and discover the unique beauty and history of Tongariro National Park NZ’s oldest national park 


Riverside rejuvenation 

Canoeing, kayaking, and fly fishing on the magnificent Whanganui River as well as heli hikes and mountain biking to the Bridge to Nowhere, there’s no shortage of outdoor activity to enjoy in the remote, pristine wilderness you’ll find in Whanganui National Park 

As the first river in the world to be granted personhood and recognized as a living entity, the Whanganui River is sacred to local Māori and is an extraordinary life force to behold.  


Year-round calendar of events 

From snow sports to cycling, walking and adventure runs, Ruapehu’s greater outdoors is the perfect backdrop for an exciting calendar of sporting events you can get amongst. Gather friends, family, and your favourite people to experience community, camaraderie, and a serious cardio boost that these unique sports events offer.  

You can kick start the new year with the annual Goat Adventure Run, an exhilarating 20 km adventure trail run from Whakapapa to Tūroa on Mt Ruapehu, just recently celebrating its 20th anniversary. Another iconic trail run, and walking event is the Tussock Traverse which traverses through the epic landscapes of Tongariro National Park. And for those keen on two wheeled sports, the award-winning Cheal T42 is an off-road adventure you can enjoy by bike or as a walk or run a popular event that really caters for everyone. Some new upcoming events you can still sign up for include Blazing Hills with its inaugural event to be held 9 March 2024 and the crowd-pleasing Raetihi Gutbuster 27 April 2024. 



For more information on all the ways you can get out and about in Ruapehu, check out www.visitruapehu.com 


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